This natural-color image from Landsat 8 (taken Sept. 20) reveals how soils, sediments, decaying leaves, pollution, and other debris have discolored the water in the swollen rivers, bays, estuaries, and the nearshore ocean off North Carolina.

This natural-color image from Landsat 8 (taken Sept. 20) reveals how soils, sediments, decaying leaves, pollution, and other debris have discolored the water in the swollen rivers, bays, estuaries, and the nearshore ocean off North Carolina. Image by Joshua Stevens, NASA.

Eight trillion gallons of water fell on the state: A NASA satellite is tracking flooding in the Carolinas following Hurricane Florence, and its images show dark, polluted water flowing from rivers into the Atlantic Ocean. One image captured on Sept. 19 shows the New River, White Oak River and Adams Creek south of Cape Lookout, shows deeply discolored water that appears dark brown — or even black. Read more HERE and HERE.

Water pollution will be ongoing problem in NC: An ongoing problem in North Carolina will be water pollution from hog waste lagoons that have been breached or overlapped by flood waters. More than 100 such lagoons in North Carolina are expected to release waste into the environment, according to the state Department of Environmental Quality. Possible consequences include algae blooms in rivers that could threaten fish, and contamination of groundwater aquifers that feed wells. READ MORE

FOOD SAFETY

Needle scare spreads to New Zealand: The scare about sewing needles in strawberries first identified in Australia has spread to New Zealand. Officials with Countdown, a supermarket in New Zealand, said needles were found in a punnet of strawberries from Western Australia, which was bought in one of its supermarkets in Auckland. The Choice brand of strawberries was sold nationwide last week. There have been no reports of illness or injury. READ MORE

Ground beef went ‘everywhere’: Sixty-six tons of ground beef recalled on Sept. 20 by Cargill Meat Solutions after a deadly E. coli O26 outbreak also went “everywhere,” or pretty close to it. USDA’s Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) on Sept. 23 came out with a list of retailers that received the recalled product, including every Safeway, Meijer, and Sam’s Club store in the nation along with some others. READ MORE

EMERGENCY RESPONSE

Perdue sending truckloads of food to Carolinas: In response to historic flooding in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, Perdue Farms is sending truckloads of food and the Perdue Chicken Food Truck to the Carolinas, along with donations to local American Red Cross chapters. Perdue is working with Feeding America to deliver a half million pounds of food— the equivalent of 416,000 meals — to local member food banks in the Carolinas, with the first truckloads rolling into the region by Monday. READ MORE

TARIFFS

Turmoil in global food markets: Food processing is one of the major business sectors being roiled by global trade wars, on both sides of the Atlantic. The Trump administration’s trade tiffs might lower the price of domestic food in the short term, but the long-term effects on the U.S. food supply are more dubious, says Food Processing magazine’s senior editor. READ MORE 

MISCELLANEOUS

Whole Foods takes action against activists: Fed up with store take-overs, Whole Foods is taking one Berkeley, Calif.-based animals rights group to court. Direct Action Everywhere, or DxE, has been targeting Whole Foods for several years now, alleging the grocery store chain sources from farms that are cruel to animals. Demonstrations have run the gamut from chicken funerals to sit-ins with cow crates. The activists even interrupted a recent ribbon cutting at a Whole Foods in Silicon Valley. READ MORE

Bananas full of cocaine: Cocaine with a street value of nearly $18 million was recovered from a shipment of bananas that wasn’t claimed at the Ports of America in Freeport, Texas. The port had donated the ripe bananas to a Texas prison. READ MORE

Does gut bacteria change the brain? A growing group of researchers around the world are investigating how gut bacteria regulates how people think and feel. Scientists have found evidence that this assemblage—about a thousand different species of bacteria, trillions of cells that together weigh between one and three pounds—could play a crucial role in autism, anxiety, depression, and other disorders. READ MORE